Styled with a mid-century aesthetic, the Model One Record Player was one of the most interesting products introduced at this year’s Rocky Mountain Audio Fest. It combines an industry-respected turntable (from Pro-Ject in the models shown) with a high-grade audio system and a bevy of digital listening features, giving users a high-quality plug-and-play solution to enjoy their music without the need of extra audio components.
It’s basically a record player with integrated speaker system in a piece of furniture that Andover calls the Stand. The Stand was designed for LP storage, holding a few of those vinyl records we want to audition regularly. The bottom shelf of the Stand can be replaced with the Model One Subwoofer, which adds deep bass to the whole system, ideal when the volume needs to be higher, or for a party.
This gives listeners plentiful output and a sound quality that mimics a pair of widely-spaced speakers, even though all drivers are placed right underneath the turntable.
This “high-grade audio system” on the Model One Record Player is what caught our attention. Because when we entered the room, the system was playing a record and it sounded great. But suddenly, someone turned the subwoofer on, and the result was even more impressive - for an all-in-one sound system, where the sound comes from a single source. Yes, the Model One features left and right speakers built into the Stand structure but the distance between sides is minimal.
So we asked, and we learned that the Model One also features side-firing speakers, which were responsible for generating the enveloping sound in the room. As the company explains, the integrated loudspeaker system is composed of four 3.5” aluminum diaphragm woofers and two Air Motion Transformer tweeters, bi-amplified by a powerful Class-D 150W amplifier. Balanced, pleasant, impressive.
According to Andover, the Model One Record Player uses a vibration-canceling technology called Isogroove to eliminate feedback that occurs in traditional turntable setups. This noise-free phono playback is an exclusive Andover Audio technology that eliminates the occurrence of feedback between turntable and speaker. This allows the turntable to be mounted in the same, low-profile enclosure as the speakers, without fidelity-disruptive hum. The result is great sound in a compact package.
A custom turntable based on the Pro-Ject Debut Carbon Espirit SB is used as a high-grade phono source. It features an Ortofon OM2 Silver cartridge, carbon fiber tonearm and acrylic platter. The turntable provides pristine, low-noise playback, without the record wear common in lower-grade alternatives. It plays 33, 45, and 78 RPM records (with optional stylus), giving entry-level users the ease-of-use they desire, with flexibility that meets the needs of advanced listeners.
Many analog and digital ins/outs are included in the system, as well as a host of customizable options accessible by a front-mounted graphic interface, with intuitive single-knob operation. Selectable sources include phono, Bluetooth 4.2 (with aptX), and a dedicated input for a Wi-Fi streaming device. Stereo and Mono listening modes are readily accessible, as well as the Panoramic mode that enhances the stereo image, making the unit sound like a pair of widely spaced speakers. The settings menu provides custom adjustment of EQ, satisfying listeners seeking a sound balance that better matches their content or room.
Headphone listeners will also be delighted with the dedicated class-A headphone amplifier, which provides optimal drive to conventional moving-coil headphones, as well as power-hungry flat panel types. Full-range preamp and subwoofer outputs are also provided for system expansion.
The Model One Record Player is inspired by classic, timeless, Mid-Century furniture. Clean lines are constructed with natural walnut hardwood, and brushed aluminum metal plates. Its compact form factor fits comfortably in any home, making it a great all-in-one entertainment system that flexibly adapts to the listeners’ needs. Retail pricing starts with $2500 USD for the basic unit with record player, while the Stand for 200 LP’s adds another $500. For those who prefer the Model One Record Player Stand with just the top shelf for 100 LPs ($300) and the subwoofer ($800), the complete system retails for $3500 USD.